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cannot touch. France and Ireland send them
cheap eggs. But France and Ireland produce
eggs for London, that the poultry-keepers may
supply themselves with other things which they
require more than eggs. Each is a gainer by the
exchange. The industry of each population is
stimulated; the wants of each supplied.


Musicthat is, classical musichas of
late years been gradually descending from
the higher to the humbler classes. The
Muse is changing her associates; she is taking
up with the humble and needy, and leaves
nothing better to her aristocratic friends than
their much-loved Italian Opera. It is to the
masses that she awards some of her choicest
scientific gifts. She has of late years permeated
and softened the hard existence of the
artisan and the labourer.

It was not always thus. There was an
'olden time' in England when Music was
more assiduously cultivated among the higher
and educated classes than it has been in
more modern days. In the sixteenth century,
knowledge of music, and skill in its performance
were deemed indispensable to persons of
condition. Queen Elizabeth, among her other
vanities, was proud of her musical powers,
and not a little jealous of her unhappy rival, the
Queen of Scots, on account of her proficiency in
this accomplishment. The favourite vocal
music of that day consisted of the madrigals
of the great Italian and English masters
those wonderful works of art, which, like the
productions of ancient Grecian sculpture,
have baffled all attempts at modern imitation.
Yet every well-educated lady or gentleman
was expected to take a part in those
profound and complicated harmonies; and
at a social meeting, to decline doing so, on
the score of inability, was regarded as a proof
of rudeness and low-breeding. In Morley's
very curious book, the 'Introduction to
tical Music,' a gentleman is represented as
seeking musical instruction in consequence of
a mortification of this kind. 'Supper being
ended,' says he, 'and musicke books, according
to the custom, being brought to the table, the
mistress of the house presented me with a
part, earnestly requesting me to sing; but
when, after many excuses, I protested
unfainedly that I could not, everie one began to
wonder, yea, some whispered to others,
demanding how I was brought up.'

Music declined in England along with
manners. In the middle of the last century, a
period rivalling the days of Charles the Second
in moral profligacy, Lord Chesterfield, who of
course expressed the fashionable feeling of
the time, advised his son to eschew the
practice of music as unbecoming a gentleman.
This feeling, we need scarcely say, has long
passed away; some of our most accomplished
amateurs of both sexes being found in the
highest circles of society.

Traces, however, of the ancient and
extensive cultivation of music were never
entirely obliterated; and, as might be expected,
they existed, along with more primitive
manners, in the more remote districts of the
country. In some of the northern counties,
particularly Lancashire and Yorkshire, the
inhabitants have from time immemorial been
remarkable for skill in vocal harmony, and
for their knowledge of the old part-music of
the English school. As these districts have
gradually become the seats of manufactures,
the same musical habits have been kept up
among the growing population; and so
salutary have these habits been foundso
conducive to order, temperance, and industry
that many great manufacturers have
encouraged them by furnishing to their work-
people the means of musical instruction.

The Messrs. Strutt, of Derby, trained some
of their brawny workmen into a band, and
many of them could step from the forge into
the orchestra, and perform some of the most
complicated pieces, by English and foreign
composers, in a creditable style.

Another set of harmonious blacksmiths
awaken the echoes of the remotest Welsh
mountains. The correspondent of a London
paper, while visiting Merthyr, was exceedingly
puzzled by hearing boys in the Cyfarthfa
works whistling airs rarely heard
except in the fashionable ball-room, opera-
house, or drawing-room. He afterwards
discovered that the proprietor of the works,
Mr. Robert Crawshay, had established among
his men a brass band, which practises once a
week throughout the year. They have the
good fortune to be led by a man (one of the
'roll-turners') who must have had somewhere
a superior musical education. 'I had
the pleasure of hearing them play, and was
astonished at their proficiency. They number
sixteen instruments. I heard them perform
the Overtures to Zampa, The Caliph of
Bagdad, and Fra Diavolo, Vivi tu, some
concerted music from Roberto, Don
Giovanni, and Lucia, with a quantity of
Waltzes, Polkas, and dance music. The
bandmaster had them under excellent
control; he everywhere took the time well, and
the instruments preserved it, each taking up
his lead with spirit and accuracy; in short,
I have seldom heard a regimental band more
perfect than this handful of workmen, located
(far from any place where they might command
the benefit of hearing other bands) in
the mountains of Wales. The great body of
men at these works are extremely proud of
their musical performances, aud like to boast
of them. I have been told it cost Mr. Crawshay
great pains and expense to bring this
band to its present excellent condition. If
so, he now has his reward. Besides this, he
has shown what the intellectual capacity of
the workman is equal to, and, above all, he
has provided a rational and refined amusement
for classes whose leisure time would